Laparoscopic splenectomy: A selected retrospective review

Alfons Pomp, Michel Gagner, Barry Salky, Alfio Caraccio, Richard Nahouraii, Mark Reiner, Daniel Herron

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


Previous investigators have suggested that laparoscopic splenectomy should be the procedure of choice for the treatment of benign hematologic disorders unresponsive to medical therapy. To evaluate the safety and utility of laparoscopic splenectomy for a variety of splenic disorders, we reviewed our collective experience at 2 institutions. We studied our 8-year experience by retrospective chart review. Patient demographic data, splenic pathology, intraoperative events, concomitant procedures, and all adverse perioperative events were recorded. A total of 131 patients had laparoscopic splenectomy, and there were 8 conversions to open surgery. Pathology included 63 with idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP), 23 malignancies, 12 thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (TTP), 10 autoimmune hemolytic anemia (AIHA), and 23 others. Accessory spleens were noted in 21 patients (16%). Concomitant surgical procedures included 12 hepatic biopsies, 4 distal pancreatectomies, 4 cholecystectomies, and 7 others. Mean operative time was 170 minutes. There were 16 major complications in 16 patients and 2 deaths. Median postoperative length of stay was 3 days. Conversions, due mostly to bleeding, are related to splenic pathology and medical comorbidity and are not temporally related to surgical experience (learning curve). The morbidity, mortality, and conversion rates were low. Laparoscopic splenectomy permits an appropriate abdominal exploration and is associated with a short hospital stay. It is the procedure of choice for most indications for splenectomy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)139-143
Number of pages5
JournalSurgical Laparoscopy, Endoscopy and Percutaneous Techniques
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2005


  • Complications
  • Idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura
  • Laparoscopic splenectomy
  • Laparoscopy
  • Splenectomy


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